Chapter 47: Clues
Translator: _Dark_Angel_ Editor: Kurisu
"Good!" The morale of Liu Dong and the other three was uplifted by this strike, yet Li Hao's figure staggered. His Origin Power had long neared the point of complete exhaustion. This last slash was, in reality, merely his despair and rage he unleashed. He had never imagined that he would actually form Saber Qi in this attack.
But he was no longer able to continue the battle. His right hand dropped to his side, and the saber almost slipped from his fingers.
"Boss, this brat can actually form Saber Qi, we definitely can't let him live!" One of the enemies immediately shouted.
The boss of these four people was a large man with deep brows who had two missing fingers on his left hand. He nodded and said, "This brat will become a big trouble for us in future. Just kill him then. We'll just have less money to extort."
"Hehe, just add a little bit more extortion money for the other four cash cows. It should be enough to cover for this guy's share."
"Maybe his corpse would be worth a few coins."
The four of them talked amongst themselves. Although they had initially been shocked by the flash of Saber Qi Li Hao had revealed, they very quickly regained their composure. After all, in this battle, they possessed an absolute advantage in terms of power.
"Flee, I'll cover your retreat, guys!" Li Hao said deeply, using all his strength to raise the saber he was still holding, his gaze determined.
"Tsk, tsk, tsk... the power of love is truly great," Ling Han clicked his tongue in praise. From their previous encounter, he could already tell that Li Hao liked Zhu Xue Yi. The reason he had been able to form a flash of Saber Qi just now... it likely was because he was worried that the object of his feelings would be hurt and suffer, leading to an extreme emotional upheaval.
Of course, extreme emotional upheavals were not a requirement for forming "Qi". However, under such conditions, humans are often able to fully realize their potential, thus some who had enough talent would be able to form "Qi".
"Now, can you make your move?" Liu Yu Tong rolled her eyes at him again. She kept feeling that this guy's actions were always much too mature, not a bit like those of a typical sixteen-year-old.
Ling Han gave a long whistle, and leaped out.
"Ling Han!" When Liu Dong and his group saw him, their expressions were first of joy, yet quickly followed by disappointment. It was because, during their past encounter, Ling Han had only been in the seventh layer of Body Refining Tier. From then until now, only two months had passed--how could it be possible that Ling Han had broken through to Element Gathering Tier within a brief two months' period?
If that was so, then even if he was now in the ninth layer of Body Refining Tier, he would still be unable to battle with a martial artist in the first layer of Element Gathering Tier on even terms. This was the ironclad rule of martial arts.
They looked around once again, hoping to discover another's figure--Liu Yu Tong was an elite martial artist in the ninth layer of Element Gathering Tier. If she was here, then they'd all be saved.
"Ai!" Ling Han gave a deliberate sigh, and said, "The looks on your faces now make me very sad!"
"Brat, who do you think you are?" The enemies' boss that had missing fingers shouted at Ling Han. His gaze was wavering as he did not know Ling Han's prowess, but judging from the fact that Ling Han only seemed to be about sixteen or seventeen years old, there was no way that he would be too powerful, right?
"I'm Ling Han, son of the Ling Clan's Clan Head from Gray Cloud Town," Ling Han introduced himself.
"Boss, we've got another cash cow here!" One of the lackeys said.
The boss with missing fingers laughed wickedly. In his opinion, Ling Han had to be one of those spoiled young masters who had an exaggerated idea of their own abilities and no idea of the perils of the real world! Thinking in this manner, he naturally would not take Ling Han seriously, and said, "You brat are really quite nice to especially deliver money to us, why don't you quickly come here and surrender obediently?"
"Hahahaha!" His group of four laughed raucously.
Ling Han was all smiles, and said, "I don't think the four of you are nice at all, why don't you obediently extend your necks and I'll gift each one of you with a slash?"
"What a self-important brat, the kind of person I hate the most is this type of spoiled young master!" One of the lackeys pounced at Ling Han while brandishing a large cleaver in a slash aimed at Ling Han's head.
"Old Four, don't be too merciless, that's a cash cow there!" The boss with missing fingers reminded.
"Hehe, I'm just going to cut off this brat's arms," Old Four said, and when the large cleaver lowered, the blade came down at a slight angle and, indeed, it was aiming at Ling Han's arm.
Ling Han drew his sword. "Xiu," the sword flashed, and the cleaver flew high up into the air while that man called Old Four was also forced to fly backwards due to the shockwave from Ling Han's parry. But he had just flown back some distance when his head separated from his neck, and a gushing stream of hot blood sprayed out.
Seeing this, the other three bandits were dumbstruck. Liu Dong and his group were also shocked numb.
Was this really Ling Han?
Two months ago, this guy was just in the seventh layer of Body Refining Tier, yet now? That Old Four had to be at least in the second layer, or even third, of Element Gathering Tier and his individual strength could overwhelm them easily. Yet he was killed in one strike by Ling Han... what kind of disparity was that?
Since Ling Han had drawn his sword, there was no way he would be merciful. His figure moved sharply and charged towards the boss with missing fingers and his two other fellows.
"Old Four must have been too careless!"
"That's right, he's just a little brat, how strong could he be!"
"Let's kill him to avenge Old Four!"
The three of them pounced while brandishing their respective weapons, and as their blades waved about wildly, they created a big commotion.
Unfortunately, in front of Ling Han, they were all much too weak.
Out of the group of three, aside from their boss with missing fingers who was in the third layer of Element Gathering Tier, the other two were both in the second layer. In front of Ling Han whose prowess was comparable to that of a martial artist in the fifth layer of Element Gathering Tier, what could they do? This was the constraint of a difference in stages. Any martial artist would know very well how big the gulf between the power of one stage and the next one was. 
Ling Han didn't even have to use Sword Qi; he did not need to use Shocking Electricity Sword Arts either. Taking all opportunities provided by the gaps in their defenses, "shua shua shua," he instantly killed them--one bandit with each strike. The boss with missing fingers didn't even get a chance to beg for mercy before the whole group was completely obliterated by Ling Han.
Liu Dong and his group felt like they were dreaming.
They exhausted all means available and only managed to survive for over half a day against the boss with missing fingers and his lackeys--and that was mostly due to the fact that they had wanted to capture Liu Dong and his group alive for extortion! But what did Ling Han do? He killed them, one enemy with one strike, as if it was a piece of cake.
In the past, there indeed had already been a gap between their battle prowess, but how could it have become so colossal?
"Ling Han, no, Big Brother Ling, thank you!"
"It's really thanks to you, otherwise, we would have been in deep trouble!"
They were stunned for a moment before hurriedly gathering around Ling Han to thank him.
Ling Han smiled and exchanged pleasantries with them. Liu Yu Tong also came out from behind the bushes, and the atmosphere quickly became lively.
"Why are you guys here?" Ling Han asked. This Seven Wind Mountains was extremely dangerous. If it wasn't for the fact that there was Earth Dragon Grass and a Red Scaled Dragon Snake here, he wouldn't even consider coming to this place. After all, who could guarantee that the demonic beasts in Spiritual Ocean Tier wouldn't suddenly feel like taking a walk around the territories of weak demonic beasts?
"The Da Yuan Tournament is going to begin very soon and so we wanted to do as much as we could to increase our individual abilities. We came here to see if we might be lucky enough to pick some spiritual medicine growing all over the place here," Chen Peng Ju said.
Ling Han could not hold back a loud laugh and said, "Are you guys perhaps thinking that just because you discovered a plant of Green Spiritual Fruits back at Balance Mountain, the heavens are looking favorably on you and you'd also be able to get a large haul here?"
Liu Dong and his group looked embarrassed. Zhu Xue Yi pouted, and said, "Don't remind us. We are really very unlucky this time. Not only did we not find any spiritual medicine, we had even accidentally fallen into a cave that had heavy Yin Qi; there were bones, human and animal alike, littered all over the place."
Ling Han started. It couldn't be that these five guys had coincidentally fallen into the cave the Red Scaled Dragon Snake inhabited, right?
If that was true, then their luck was indeed extraordinarily good! 5 Best Chinese Romance Books of 2020 So Far